10 Years Ago, 2010
On Jan. 17, more than 250 former colleagues, family members and friends gathered to help former Pine City School Superintendent Clarence Espeseth celebrate his 90th birthday at the Pizza Pub in Pine City. Those who know Espeseth agree that he is a remarkable man. In 1965 the Pine City school board recruited him for the position of Superintendent of Independent School Districts 578 and 579. He almost declined. According to his own words, “Everything was in such bad shape here!” However, Espeseth means “Aspen on the hill” in Norwegian. The aspen tree has a unique characteristic to bend in high winds instead of break. Espeseth took the job. Throughout the next 17 years, Espeseth – along with many dedicated colleagues – transformed every aspect of the local educational system. At his 90th birthday party, many commented on how he treats everyone with respect no matter who they are. Former Guidance Counselor Howard Olson said, “He is a friend’s friend and an educator’s educator.”
Pine City residents with a taste for Asian food now have a new dining option. Wild Bamboo, located at 610 Eighth Avenue Southwest in Pine City, is Long Vo’s second restaurant. He recently closed Little Camranh Bay in Grantsburg, Wisconsin, and Grantsburg’s loss is Pine City’s gain. “I looked at Pine City and thought it should have a fine-dining Asian restaurant,” Vo said. Vo, who has been in the United States for 14 years, is only 25 years old, but has his eyes clearly set on his dreams. “This is my goal – to be a restauranteur,” he said.
25 Years Ago, 1995
The Firefighter of the Year for the Pine City Department is Chief Paul Miller. His father, former Fire Chief Jack Miller, presented a plaque to Paul at the department’s annual holiday banquet Saturday night. Miller has been a member of the Pine City Fire Department since 1982 and has served as chief for the past two years. He was chosen for the Firefighter of the Year honor because of his commitment to the department, as well as his service to the city as civil defense director, a member of the budget committee and the new public safety committee. Miller is employed by Peoples Natural Gas as a service technician.
Four Pine City High School students and a teacher are spending this week in Washington, DC as participants in the Close Up Foundation government studies program. Social Studies teacher Mary Ellen Sauser is leading the group, made up of Florence Abelman, Cory Eken, Brekka Hanson and Rebecca Haug. During their week in Washington, the students will attend seminars with members of Congress and meet with a representative of the Washington press corps, lobbyists, government officials and political figures.
50 Years Ago, 1970
Steve Roubinek of Boy Scout Troop 188 of Pine City attended the “Order of the Arrow” winter training session and banquet at Nahak Lodge 526 in Superior, Wisconsin, on Jan. 17.
The State Junior College Board designated Cambridge as Minnesota’s 20th state junior college site and recommended Pine City, Cambridge combine as a community college.
State highway officials assured the Pine City community that the village would get an interstate rest stop, but informed them four sites were under consideration. The engineers’ objection to the site favored by Pine City appeared to be the appeal of the Snake River. While the river would appeal to the traveler, it might be something in the way of an attractive nuisance. It could tempt the unwary to use the water for swimming or boating with possible resultant loss of life, for which the department could be held responsible.
75 Years Ago, 1945
David J. Winton, regional director of the WPB, today announced a nation-wide “brown-out” order effective Feb. 1, 1945, prohibiting use of electricity for outdoor advertising, ornamental and display lighting to alleviate the critical fuel shortage. It is estimated that the order will save 2,000,000 tons of coal annually.
Sixty-six of Minnesota’s 87 counties reported 536 cases of infantile paralysis in 1944.
The Sandstone community was saddened Sunday when the news flashed rapidly about town that Ray W. Barstow, one of Sandstone’s most prominent citizens, had passed away that morning. All knew that he had been ill with a heart ailment and that he had returned recently from a hospital in St. Paul, but no one realized that his death was so near.
Brought back by popular request to the Family Theatre, Walt Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
100 Years Ago, 1920
One of the saddest accidents reported for some time, was the death of the two-and-a half-year old son of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Rozum, living east of town, last Friday morning. The little fellow had been left in a chair while his parents had gone to the stable to do the morning milking. During their absence he got a stick of wood and opening the stove he set fire to the wood and evidently set his clothes on fire at the same time. He was overcome by smoke, as his little spirit had departed from its earthly home when he was found by his bereaved mother only a few minutes later. The heartbroken parents have the sympathy of the whole community in the loss of their beloved child.
Lieutenant Robt. Wilcox opened his law office in the room recently vacated by Bancleon’s Barber Shop, last week.
125 Years Ago, 1895
The taxes in this village are about double what they were the previous years, owing to the new and the special village tax. It is hard, but will have to be endured for a while at least until we can get our new school building paid for. It is the first time in a number of years that this district has been in debt and it will come hard at first but it will be only a few years until the district will be out of debt and the taxes again reduced.
If there have been any births within the village of Pine City during the year 1894 that have not been reported to the health officer it should be reported at once to E.E. Barnum so that the register of births and deaths will be complete and accurate. Number of births and deaths reported in 1894 is 23, while in 1893 there were 30. The number of deaths in 1894 was 12, and in 1893 it was 11. Of the 12 reported only four died of disease contracted in Pine City. Six died as a result of accidents by water, fire, etc. What village of 1,000 people can show a better death record. From Jan. 1 to May 1 there was not a death recorded.